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Need help finding a good pair of headphones...

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hey everyone (first post)

 

Sorry if I missed the 'I need help choosing...' thread - but I didn't see one so I thought I'd post here.

 

I'm not an audiophile by any means, but recently I decided I've had enough of listening to music through my onboard sound card + $60 creative headset.

 

Now, I'm going to spend about $130-180 on a good sound card (creative or maybe an asus xonar) with an inbuilt amp if needed/recommended.

 

As for headphones, what should I get? I enjoy listening to instrumentals, classical, some pop and I'm not a real fan of too much bass. I've heard Sennheiser are great - I was looking at the HD 518 or 595. Are there any significant differences besides price?

 

I'm open to any suggestions... doesn't have to be Sennheiser - just anything that's good for music. :)

post #2 of 16

To help you more, we'll need to know what kind of music you listen to. Is isolation needed ? 

 

Welcome to Head-fi atsmile.gif

 

edit : oops, totally missed that line about your preferences


Edited by Parall3l - 9/17/11 at 8:25am
post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 

Sorry, I'm a total noob.

 

What is isolation?

post #4 of 16

Isolation =  the ability of blocking out noise. 

 

The Sennheisers are open, meaning that they have holes at the back of the ear cups. That leaks a lot of noise and if you plan to use them outside, closed headphones are more of your thing.

post #5 of 16

Hey, and welcome aboard!

Sound card is going to be a nice improvement for you, but at the same time (at least in my experience) there isn't too tremendous an amount of difference between all of them in the mid range. I'd hesitate before buying any of the super top of the line type deals, as when you're getting towards $100+ on a soundcard I'd just recommend an external DAC/Amp combo at that point. That aside, Creative often has a refurbished sale going on that you can get factory refurbished cards at a pretty steep discount.

http://us.outletstore.creative.com/

The only really decent looking deal on there at the moment is that Fata1ity edition card, and that's still even a little more expensive that I'd have thought, but you can check back there at other times to see what's available.

As for a new card, I personally know several people who own and have been pleased with this card:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16829271001

Which is in the same price range as that refurbished Creative card, so maybe do a bit of digging around and find out which one might be better. (Also note that the Creative card is a PCIe 1x format while the HT Omega is a standard PCI interface, if that is a factor.)

 

As for headphones, I'm going to have to recommend Audio Technica AD700s. Based on you listening to instrumental music and classical, and not being much of a bass head, I think they'll be your best option. I personally own and used AD700's as my primary headphone for over a year and really loved them for that kind of music (I also listen to a lot of instrumental stuff, and am not a bass-head by any means)

http://www.amazon.com/Technica-ATH-AD700-Open-air-Audiophile-Headphones/dp/B000CMS0XU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1316272640&sr=8-1

 

A couple of other options you can investigate in that price range might be some Sennheisers as you mentioned, HD555 or 515s, or you could check out Beyerdynamic DT 440s or a couple of other options. I really feel pretty strongly about the AD700s for what you've mentioned you listen to.

 

post #6 of 16
Well ya can't have mine. wink.gif

I'd recommend building an audio circuit outside your computer. Use the computer as a source but bring the digital conversion to analog and amping outside the box. As for headphones, if you don't mind used, you can get some decent deals on the for sale forum. For your musical listings, a K701 is open, has a wide soundstage and is pretty good. Not the best of everything but pretty good.
post #7 of 16

 Grados are great, low impedance cans, so easily driven by a computer soundcard (if that's the route you choose). They're mid-forward generally (vocals,guitars) and pretty treble-happy as well. The bass is lacking in some cases (up to the 225i) but you said you weren't really needing too much bass. The soundstage is fairly small but the actual stereo imaging is fairly good and makes up for it. If you're listening to lots of vocals, acoustic, classical, you will most likely love these things. There are better headphones for classical, but these cover most of  your interests pretty well I would think.

post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 

Ive got my eye on a grados80i... and a few sennheiser - but this Technica AD700s looks nice too.

 

I dont know what to choose ! :P

post #9 of 16

If anything, I would pay the little bit more for the 125is.... Sr80is are too treble happy in my experience

post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hifianddrumming View Post

If anything, I would pay the little bit more for the 125is.... Sr80is are too treble happy in my experience



If Grado is too bright for you, try Alessandro.

 

post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by real2104 View Post

Ive got my eye on a grados80i... and a few sennheiser - but this Technica AD700s looks nice too.

 

I dont know what to choose ! :P



My advice is to get 2 pairs..then compare which one you'll like more, then sell the one you don't like.

 

P.S: Don't be surprised if you'll end up liking both haha

 

post #12 of 16
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hifianddrumming View Post

If anything, I would pay the little bit more for the 125is.... Sr80is are too treble happy in my experience


Actually I'm a treble happy kinda guy, I don't like much bass at all but love treble. maybe the sr80s would be good?

 

Anyways, can someone tell me this - Is there any significant difference between the Sennheiser HD518 vs 555 vs 595 aside from the differences in price?

 

Also, I'm looking at the 'Audio Technica ATH-AD700' they seem great and really affordable.


Edited by real2104 - 9/17/11 at 7:08pm
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 

Ok after doing a lot of research I decided the audiotech AD700 are most suitable for my needs, preferences and budget.

 

Thanks everyone.

post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by real2104 View Post

Ok after doing a lot of research I decided the audiotech AD700 are most suitable for my needs, preferences and budget.

 

Thanks everyone.


Heya,

 

Look at the Fischer Audio FA-002 before you lose money on the AD700 and buy your next headphone...

 

Very best,

 

post #15 of 16
Thread Starter 

The Fischer Audio FA-002 is a lot more expensive and I can hardly find anyone who stocks these (I'm in Australia).

 

I only spent $115 (incl international postage @ $30) on the AD700 which are brand new - I doubt I could get the same deal on a Fischer Audio FA-002.

 

In Australia everything is a lot more expensive - for example a Sennheiser HD558 here costs $300+ but I see the exact same headphones on Amazon for only $168.


Edited by real2104 - 9/18/11 at 8:53pm
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